Monthly Archives: November 2011

Science Work Station

Here are a few pictures of our Science Work Station.  We have had our first bird visitors to our window bird feeders this week so the kids are excited to watch for different kinds of birds feeding on our feeders (we have four on shepards’ crooks in the yard and two suction cupped to the window).


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Kristen 🙂

Activities for MWS

Here are some new activities that I have put into our Math Work Stations (we are now working on the Quarter 2 Math Common Core Standards where the children need to compose and decompose numbers).

The children have 10 frames for the numbers 11-19.  They lay one 10 frame out and make two rows of 5 frames.  Next, they put the number cards (labeled 11-19) above each one of the 10 frames.  Finally, they put the corresponding number of cubes on the 10 frame (based upon the number that was on the card).  Here you can see some of the 10 frames laid out and the number cards (although the children are still working on putting the cubes on).  This is a great work station for a large table or floor area.

This game is called Roll A Pilgrim Boy and Girl.  I’ve posted a pumpkin and a scarecrow before.  The children roll a die and check the chart (I’ve posted that before as well) to see what shape corresponds with the number they have rolled.  They keep playing until one of the partners has filled up both shapes.

This is an addition box from Lakeshore.  The children spin the spinners and put that many ladybugs on each of the leaves.  They then add those numbers together and find the correct number answer.

I have now changed out all the MWS tubs once (from quarter 1 standards to quarter 2 standards).  It takes about two weeks to get everything changed out because I have 14 tubs.  Each day for 2 weeks or so, I introduce a new activity or game and then we all practice it large group before it goes into the tub.  It then stays there until the next quarters standards are ready to be taught.  It takes my students about three weeks to rotate all the way through the 14 tubs once, so they do each activity 2-3 times per quarter, but they are practicing the same skills in many different ways.

Kristen 🙂

Anchor Wall Charts

Here are some of the anchor charts we have made in my room this year.  I put them up on this large empty space above my counter so we could see them from pretty much anywhere in the room.

You can click on the picture for a closer view.  This will also help solve the mystery of the green stoplight dot for some of you who asked. 🙂

Kristen 🙂

Clean Shelf

In order to get the space cleaned off to store my Math Work Station tubs, I had to do some cleaning.  I moved a wire two shelf shelf off the counter as well as all my Science materials (I found a better place for them).

The wire shelf had all my buckets of Reading A-Z leveled books on it.  I thought moving those closer to the area where I use them was a better idea than walking halfway across the room!  Here is a picture of the results after I moved them to their new home and after the MWS tubs were sent to their new homes!

I’ve got my books in leveled tubs and the games and activities I use all the time tucked away on this shelf right behind my small group table!

Kristen 🙂

Math Work Station Storage

Here is how I store my Math Work Station tubs.  I have a pocket chart where each tub number is listed along with 1-2 students’ names.  They find what number tub they are working with that day and then find it along this shelf.  Because the tubs get put back in a different order each day, the children have really done a great job on learning how to recognize the number that they need each day.  I got these tubs at Wal-Mart for about $3.50 each.  It was about $40 for all of them, but they will last a long time and are the perfect size!  I think they are those double wide shoebox sized ones:

I have the tubs stacked two high…not to tall for a Kindergarten student to reach, but tall enough that they can see all of them at once over the heads of everyone else.  In another life, I will clean out the shelves below so that they can sit there, but for now this is working just fine!

Kristen 🙂

Science Notebooks

Here is a picture of one of the entries we have made in our Science Notebooks recently.  We are studying Day/Night from the National Geographic Earth Science Kit.  We were drawing/writing about things we can see at nighttime or during the daytime:



This is a page that came with the kit, but it would be easy to create one yourself!

Kristen 🙂

Some work with Quotation Marks

When we were reading The Little Red Hen a few weeks ago, it seemed like the perfect time to get some work done on recognizing quotation marks.  We used highlighter tape and I folded over a tiny part at the end to help them come off and on more smoothly.  We store the highlighter tape on laminated index cards and keep it in a bag near our Big Book Work station so we can highlight different things during LWS. This was part of one of our Big Book lessons during this week.

Kristen 🙂

The Little Old Lady who swallowed a pie…

I’ve posted this little old lady before (either last Thanksgiving or the one before it…  Here are some pictures of her assembled…

(She’s really easy–just color, cut and tape on a sandwich sized ziploc baggie with the top inch cut off)


Kristen 🙂

Math Work Stations Organization

I’m in a mood to organize things lately…I like to start getting things cleaned up near the end of the year so that my new year will be uncluttered and happy!  Ask me how that’s going the 2nd week of January!! 🙂  I came up with a way to organize my Math Work Station materials after they have been removed from the tub (thanks to Debbie Diller for her MWS ideas!  She’s my American Idol–can you tell?? 🙂 ).


I got a big 3 inch binder and filled it with a bunch of clear sheet protectors.  I then divided the sections up by when the materials were introduced into the tubs (Sept/Oct, Oct/Nov, etc.).  If the lid had a picture in it to remind the children what to do, when I switched out those materials, I put that picture in the right sheet protector section and wrote on the back what supplies I needed for next year–small things like numbers written on index cards were put into the sheet protector also.  Next year, I’ll be able to see what I introduced in each “round” of tubs and what I need to quickly put them together.  You could also organize this binder by the Common Core Standard that it addresses.  For the tubs that I did not take a picture of, I included the page that gave directions–just something to help me remember what I put into the tubs.

GBM 2011

We started our new Gingerbread Man (GBM) unit today!!  We read The Gingerbread Boy by Paul Galdone (and added a copy to the listening center).  The REAL fun with this unit starts on Wednesday, when our cookies go missing!


I also wanted to show you how I organize my materials from year to year for the GBM unit:

I use a file crate and create a folder for each country that we have or could visit.  I collect materials in that folder including my envelope that each letter and activity is delivered in.  I also have several general folders with copies of holiday related materials that I can plug in when I need to.  This method makes it easy for me to keep everything together and find it!!

These are the wooden spoon puppets that we will use to retell the GBM story later this week.  I got the pictures from the December grades 1-3 Mailbox resource book about 10 years ago.  I laminated them and glued them on Dollar Store wooden spoons (on the smooth backside of the spoon).  I also have the pictures laminated on sentence strips with their respective names written next to them.

Also, I got this great GBM puzzle from the Scholastic flyers a few years ago…


The other thing we did today was a little GBM subtraction…we created problems where the GBM had to run away in different amounts:

I just used die cut GBM and put a little bit of magnet tape on the back to make them stick to my dry erase board.


Hope this gives you some ideas…check back all this week for updates on the return of the GBM!!

Kristen 🙂


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